Episode: Fringe 2.11 – “Johari Window”
Original Air Date: January 14, 2010
Getting back into the show, you’d think we’d get a continuation of the momentum “Grey Matters” started up. You know, the whole storyline of Fringe? Well, you’d have been wrong like me. What we did get was another X-Files mashup (“Home,” “Our Town,” and “Post-Modern Prometheus” come to mind) where Walter is the only interesting thing happening for me. I hate that I sound like a broken record with this show, but this was seriously the most boring episode this season (the horrendously out-of-place Season 1 ep they showed on January 11, 2010 is tied with it).
The episode starts out with a state trooper picking up a supposed runaway kid, who suddenly becomes disfigured as they drive back to the station. At the station, it’s revealed that there have been many local stories about so-called “monsters” like the kid is supposed to be from the other two troopers there (the one who picked the kid up off the road is the only compassionate one in the bunch). Suddenly, a couple of disfigured adults come in, guns blazing, and kill the cops in front of the kid before they take off with him. Before the compassionate trooper is ganked in the face, the kid apologizes to him as he get dragged away. Not the best method of keeping hidden and under the radar.
So the team heads out to see what’s what (loved when Walter got Deliverance confused with real life, and the Sasquatch/Yeti comment), and it’s all pretty predictable and slow from then on out. I mean, it was fairly obvious right from the start that the entire town of Edina was in on what happened with the dead troopers. The Edina sheriff tells the team that there’s a military base close to the town that gives off a hum and that he basically knows nothing. Walter seems to know something since the hum immediately causes him to start singing a song that will undoubtedly mean something 10-15 minutes before the episode is over.
Craziest thing that happened in the ep was Martin Cummins showing up. Anyone else remember him in Poltergeist: The Legacy, or was I the only person who ever watched that show? But, of course, he’s only in the show long enough to be the runaway kid’s father and get killed by Peter. Speaking of, Olivia telling Peter the first time you kill someone it can be hard to deal with — was I the only one who got the feeling that wasn’t Peter’s first time?
After he gets killed and his body is taken back to Walter’s lab, he changes from Martin Cummins to looking like that one mutant guy in Total Recall, just as the butterfly Walter collected for Astrid (how cute is it that he has warmed to her so much?) turns into a deformed moth. The theory is no longer metamorphosis, but maybe that the military base near the town was doing some experiments. Broyles gets Peter and Olivia some paperwork on the base: the project there was called Project Elephant (clever or obvious reference to the fact that the people of Edina kinda look like the Elephant Man? You decide). Hey, Walter’s song has elephants in it. Maybe he was involved? They ask him, he says no, but of course he was. He always is.
Ten to fifteen minutes before the episode is over, Astrid and Walter figure out what the song means, and piece it together that Walter was involved in Project Elephant (a project to create a super crazy camo device for the military). He and Astrid go into Edina, even though Peter tells him to go home, and shock of shocks, the cloaking device that has been making the entire town look normal is in the basement of the runaway kid’s house. Unfortunately, this doesn’t help save Peter and Olivia who are getting chased down by the Edina sheriff and his buddies. They all get killed (the sheriff gets it from the kid’s mom, who Walter knew as a baby).
In the end, Broyles shows compassion and lets Walter cover up the fact that the town has a cloaking device. Walter wants to let them continue to hide out in their town forever. That irked me because why wouldn’t the townsfolk want to leave the town to try and find out if they’re deformities could be corrected? Also, the whole inbreeding thing kind of makes me want to puke, but really it was more the unfairness of keeping future generations locked in the town. They had one runaway, there’s going to be more sooner or later. However, like most of the recent eps, this one ended with a great scene with Walter telling Peter: “I’m glad you choose to see me the way you do.” Dude, if Peter ever finds out what Walter did (and who knows what season that’ll happen in at this rate), it is going to be UGLY.
Here’s this episode’s glyphs:
Rating: 2.5 / 5 Stars
“was I the only one who got the feeling that wasn’t Peter’s first time?”
Nope, definitely not the only one, given his history, not to mention his obvious aptitude with a gun. In fact, I was very surprised it wasn’t addressed immediately within the episode. If it’s not addressed later I’ll be immensely disappointed. And I agree with you 100% on the one-off episodes getting kinda ridiculous, even though I actually enjoyed this one.. stick with the pattern already!
I hope they address that in the future, too! Preferably the future that involves the remainder of this season, but beggars can’t be choosers and I’ll just have to learn to be more patient. ;)
I know that they intentionally went into Fringe trying to make it the opposite of Lost (where if you missed one ep, you’re lost the rest of the series). However, this is starting to feel like the poor man’s version of Law & Order (an entire show made up of one-off eps) meets X-Files (crazy spooky subject matter). The core of the show is interesting enough to have it in more than five eps the whole season, imo.
It seems like they’ve gotten worse about it lately, though, which is annoying. Originally (like in S1), there were a lot of one-off eps but they at least were connected to the pattern. Now, they’re just totally isolated cases all over the Northeast so they feel less satisfying (to me at least). I feel like they keep setting up all this great stuff and then only go back to it every once in a while. I wouldn’t mind the monster of the week stuff if they at least addressed the arc stuff in each ep as a B story. I do still love the show though. I only complain because I care. =)
I do remember Martin Cummins in Poltergeist: the Legacy. I loved him on that show and also on Dark Angel.
He’s still handsome!
Celeste: I completely agree. I’m not watching this show every week because I LIKE to bitch about how it reminds me of The X-Files. I LIKE the show arc. I’m not one of those people who watches stuff they don’t enjoy just to criticise it every week, you know? That is incredibly boring for me and I don’t enjoy it at all. Taking into consideration that this is Fox, I don’t know if these eps are being aired in the order they were intended to, but I don’t understand having so little of the main arc in the first half of the season. For a while, I thought that may be all the one-offs and monsters-of-the-week would somehow be revealed to be connected to the A story, but I’m starting to feel that isn’t going to happen.
Maria Luisa: I thought I was the only person who watched P:tL! *high fives* I didn’t know he was on Dark Angel, but I never got into that show (which is surprising since I’m all about a strong female lead).
Yes, he was in the second season of Dark Angel as villain Ames White. He was quite sexy in that, pure bad boy sex-appeal.
I still loved him better as Nick in P:tL though.
He still looks good now.